Wednesday, March 26, 2008

History of Boyd Station, Harrison County, KY

A bit of history of how the current day community of Boyd came about.
"Boyd Station, an early Kentucky settlement on the South Fork of the Licking River, 11 ½ miles NNW of the current day city of Cynthiana, the county seat of Harrison County.

On December 8, 1854, on the site of a watermill built by Whitehead Coleman in 1810, Thomas Boyd established a trading post which he named Boyd’s Station in honor of Andrew Boyd, Sr., an early Kentucky settler. Within a short time it became a coal and water supply station on the Covington and Lexington railroad and the village grew up around the station. In 1880, the outpost became simply Boyd, which name it bore until it closed."

Source: Kentucky Place Names By Robert M. Rennick

Today, Boyd is probably less populated than any other time since the establishment of Kentucky settlements in the late 1880's.

The railroad tracks still run through the town above the South Fork of the Licking River but the trains no longer stop. Whitehead Coleman's mill is a distant memory. The old 1920 Boyd bank building which burned years ago now stands long vacant across the road from the old Spicer General Store now a storage building.

The Boyd United Methodist Church shares a pastor with the sister church in nearby Berry. Attendance for the congregation on most Sundays is under twenty people. Land for the church was donated in 1920 by Oscar Rankin Clifford, the grandfather of Katie Bell for the church.

Tobacco barns still stand in Boyd but the burley tobacco crops once grown to support the family are all but gone. It has been said by one long time local that an acre of tobacco and a cow raised many of the children of Harrison County.

Show me Boyd on the map


Anonymous said...

Love your pictures. My grandparents raised a family there , so I have a little knowledge of the history, but not much.
My grandparents, Roscoe Vernor and Anna Garnett Wood Smith, lived in the house beside the church. He used to go over every Sunday morning and build a coal fire before church. There were 2 outhouses behind the church and the house, which we used until about 1970 for the house. I don't know when plumbing was installed in the church.
The right side of the house had a large yard, the next house belonged to Bob Hanna and family. I can't remember the wife's name and they had 3 girls, I think, that we used to play with .
Anna was the postmistress and I think she worked out of Spicers store. Roscoe was a rural route carrier. He kept a box of dum-dum suckers under the seat for the kids who met him at their mailboxes

Anonymous said...

Wow, very glad you left this information. Would love to know if you have any other details, memories, stories about Boyd. Please let us know. Many thanks.

Carrie Baugh said...

I'd love more information on Boyd! My great great grandfather Willis Lawson owned a shop in Boyd long ago. I know because I have a newspaper article about when it burned. I believe the family lived in Berry. Thanks for the images and info so far! If I can figure out how to share an image of the article, I will leave it here!

MSW said...

I have old pictures of Boyd - the depot, mill and the farm across from the depot (my grandparents lived there 60s through 80s). And somewhere I have a disc with a lot of Boyd pictures on it. Interested in any?
My grandparents were Browns and Spradlings.
I can be reached at

Jack said...

MSW...sorry this has taken me so long to see and get back to you about but YES! Would love to see the images. I will message you directly..thanks